(Australian 1975 - Current)
Frequently cited as one of the finest guitarists in the nation, Andrew Pendlebury (from the Sports) has always seemed destined towards a career in music. From age four he studied violin under the auspicious direction of Nathan Gutman, and at an early age played Vivaldi and Bach with the prowess of someone far beyond his tender years. Andrew is the son of two celebrated Australian artists, Laurence Pendlebury and Nornie Gude.
It is little wonder that Andrew also possesses a great talent with the brush, and that his sister Anne was encouraged in her career as an actress with stage and TV credits.
After leaving school Andrew set about forging a career for himself in the art world. He held a number of successful exhibitions of his impressionist style works, but music still held his attention. Exposed to Django Reinhardt by a friend of his father who was a dance band guitarist in WW2, and excited by the new sounds evolving from players like Jimi Hendrix bursting onto the scene, Andrew began to focus his creative energy into the guitar.
Despite his early classical training, Andrew is a self-taught guitarist and he set about creating a
voice for himself through the instrument. He was enthused by players like Lenny Breau, Les Paul, James Burton, Jimmy Bryant and Chet Atkins, but like the painter is inspired by other art forms. Andrew also finds inspiration in the work of many styles of music and instruments. He has broad tastes ranging from a great appreciation of trumpet player Miles Davis to his pop sensibilities towards the Rolling Stones and the Beatles.
By the mid 1970’s Pendlebury was venturing into bands like The Sharks, before joining the R&B / country outfit The Carrl Myriad Band.
Then in 1977 Andrew moved on to become a member of 'The Sports', an R&B Rockabilly band. At the time the music scene was experiencing somewhat of a renaissance with a highly competitive and vibrant burst of new bands defining what was to become known years later, as the “Australian sound”. The Sports became a big part of that awakening, breaking through with songs like “Boys - (What did the detective say)”, “Don’t throw Stones” and “Who listens to the Radio?”, they quickly became one of the hottest bands in the nation. It is no surprise that some 22 years later “Who listens to the radio?” the song penned by Cummings and Pendlebury, was still voted number 23 in the “Top 50 All time great Australian songs” by Rhythms Magazine.
It was inevitable that the interest began to spread overseas and the band toured the UK in 1979 as support to Graham Parker and the Rumour, which saw them sign a deal with UK label Stiff records. In the US they were released via Arista Records, Ariola Label throughout Europe, and with Mushroom Records as their Australian Record label. Their second album “Don’t throw Stones” consolidated their success, yielding two top forty singles. Then third album “Suddenly” featured a slicker. more commercial sound, and the radio friendly singles “ Strangers on a train” and “Perhaps” which by this stage made them one of the most successful bands ever in Australia.
During his time with The Sports, Andrew also moonlighted with The Gentlemen which consisted of members from Skyhooks and Daddy Cool. The Sports fourth album “Sondra” came out in 1981, garnished with three singles “Stop the baby talking”, “How come?” and “When we go out tonight”.
In October of that year the Sports issued a mini-Album “The Sports play Dylan (and Donovan) as a tongue in cheek farewell to their Australian record label. It included covers of two of the most commercially unfashionable artists of the time, Bob Dylan and Donovan. It was quoted in Rhythms magazine earlier this year “that Dylan himself had heard the recording and found it an amicable rendition”. By the end of the year The Sports had called it a day. Andrew then spent a
year with The Dugites before joining the newly formed Stephen Cummings Band. Pendlebury played on Stephen’s first solo album “Senso” and three albums to follow over the next five years, also touring Australia with the outfit.
1987 saw Andrew branch out with his first solo album "Between the Horizon and the Dockyard" which stamped the guitarist as a major talent in his own right. The album, which was backed by drummer Peter Jones and bassist Mark Ferrie, showcased an eclectic mix of styles from country swing, Spanish, Bluegrass, jazz and rock but through which Pendlebury’s individual and passionate playing triumphed. The album also contained two co-writes with Stephen Cummings- one of those tracks “She set fire to the house” is surely one of the most mood setting and evocative songs penned in this country. Andrew also ventured out during this time with bassist Mark Ferrie in The Slaughtermen, a very energetic white gospel, blues orientated outfit. The band put in some very inspired performances and produced two albums and many singles.
By 1988 Pendlebury released “Tigerland” his second solo album, followed in 1990 by “Zing went the Strings” as part of the WEA Records “Gallery Series”. On both albums Andrew worked with players like Pete Linden (pedal steel), Paul Grabowsky (piano), Stephen Hadley (bass), J. J. Hacket (drums), and others including Shane O’Mara, Nick Smith, Stephen Cummings, Doug De Vries and Michael Williams, all of whom helped to provide the understated and classy backing to Pendlebury’s contemplative, instrumental guitar work. For “Don’t hold back that Feeling”, Pendlebury’s fourth solo project, he enlisted some guest vocalists including Chris Wilson, Deborah Conway, Kate Cerebrano and Dave Steel. The album was critically acclaimed and went on to win the 1993 ARIA for “Best Adult Contemporary album”.
Pendlebury’s ability to create soundscapes and heartfelt ambience was now becoming known by a wider audience, and due to the variety of musical avenues explored on the album, it had a wide appeal. Andrew had known Doug DeVries for some years prior when in 1993 they collaborated on an album ‘Karate’.
A master jazz guitarist, Doug’s sensibilities teamed with Andrew’s vast palette of sounds, and ability were the catalyst for the creation of this masterwork encompassing blues, jazz, gypsy, folk and boogie. What also made the musical experience so distinctive, was that it was all performed on acoustic guitar. During this time Pendlebury also worked on sessions for many other bands and artists and also played as a backing musician for Tess McKenna and Dave Steel. Andrew and Doug De Vries teamed up again in 1995 to record “Trouble and Desire” for ABC Music.
The album contained songs by DeVries and Pendlebury and also by the great Django Reinhardt. Containing orchestral accompaniments the album provides a wonderful listening experience.
Throughout the time of recording both his solo albums, and also his work with Doug DeVries, Andrew was touring heavily and playing as a member of Aussie blues great, Chris Wilson’s “Crown of Thorns”. On Chris, Andrew states “ What a man, has to be in the top five of my favourite people and musicians!”
Andrew Pendlebury is a gifted composer and has built a strong catalogue of works over the years across a broad range of genres from theatre music to blues, classical, country and contemporary.
Ever busy, and continuing upon his journey of musical discovery, Andrew has undertaken numerous recording and writing projects over the past few years.
Venturing into composing music for live theatre, Andrew has scored for many prominent Australian productions, working with some of the best directors this country has to offer. Pendlebury finds theatre a new and exciting challenge using his playing to illustrate moods and sentiments within the storylines he is accompanying, creating the aural accompaniment which allows the audience to get lost in the performance of the actors and the intricacies of the script. His work in this field has bought him many accolades from the critics and audiences alike.
In 2002, Pendlebury reunited with Ferrie and formed a two guitar duo and later released 'Late Night at the Nicholas Building'. They then added a third member, Israeli cellist, Adi Sappir, playing their first performance as 'The Mercurials' in 2003. In 2005 'The Mercurials' released their debut self titled album. This was followed by a second album, Tangents in 2008 and a third album, Silver and Gold in 2009.
Like all great players Andrew Pendlebury, even after his thirty-five years of playing so many styles of music, is excited by what the future holds and is still invigorated by the sheer desire and inner passion for music. Like a master artist working on the great canvas of his career, he is not swayed by fashion or commercialism. In a world where we love to define music into categories, Pendlebury has truly created his own unique voice, he is a man who in his own words says, “There are only two types of music, good and the other type”. You can rest assured that Andrew Pendlebury will continue to ensure the survival of the art form of great music.
[taken from the mercurial's website]
I have posted these two albums together as I have always looked upon them as being a pigeon pair - they both feature Pendlebury's brilliant acoustic guitar work as well as featuring vocals by Stephen Cummings and Pedal Steel Guitar work by Peter Linden. Both albums were also released on the independent record label Cleopatra Records.
'Between the Horizon and the Dockyard' is the stronger of the two, but each album has its strong points, notably those tracks featuring the steel guitar work of Linden.
The post consists of two separate 320kps rips taken from my vinyl copies and includes full album artwork for both albums.
Between the Horizon and the Dockyard Link (75Mb) New Link 26/10/2015
01 - Coming Thru Slaughter
02 - She Set Fire To The House
03 - Country Joy
04 - Watch This Movie For Me
05 - Corn Pickin'
06 - Vonetta
07 - Thru A Window
08 - Almora
09 - Don't Mean A Thing (If It Ain't Got That Swing)
10 - El Negrito
11 - Alla Cubana
Andrew Pendlebury all guitars
Mark Ferrie bass guitar
Peter Jones drums and percussion
Peter Linden - pedal steel on 2 and dobro on track 4
Steve Hadley - bass on track 12
James Black - organ and additional guitars on track 12
Stephen Cummings - vocals on tracks 2 and 4
Tigerland Link (88Mb) New Link 26/10/2015
01 - Tigerland I
02 - Early
03 - Passing Thru
04 - The Crime Of Time
05 - True Love
06 - Harmonic Blue
07 - Windy And Warm
08 - Nocturne No2 Op 48
09 - Cakewalk
10 - Eudwanosbatos
11 - Two Years
12 - Tigerland II
Andrew Pendlebury all guitars, vocals
Steve Hadley bass guitar
Peter Linden Steel Guitar and Dobro on tracks 2 & 3
Stephen Cummings, Nick Smith - vocals on track 3
Shane O'Mara guitar on track 11
Nigel Frayne Bass on track 3